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SHOW & TELL MAGAZINE 2018 I I-CONNECT007 75 to use for notes and specifications, and is com- patible with IPC-2581, Gerber and ODB++. It is built on the JSON Schema. In his discussion "Improved Interoperability Between MCAD & ECAD Design Tools," Robb McCord described the problems of exchanging files between the MCAD and ECAD sectors. He then went on to describe a process of map- ping MCAD IDF files to a new IDF file suit- able for board importing and placement. In a similar fashion, the board ECAD exports DFX through a post-processor suitable for import- ing by MCAD. Mentor's Craig Armenti presented "Optimiz- ing ECAD-MCAD Collaboration for a Com- petitive Advantage," Craig talked about using Mentor's newer IDX, created in 2010, as a way to offer MCAD and ECAD collaboration. This protocol was updated to IDX 3.0 in 2016. Craig provided a demonstration. In her presentation, "Key Design Consider- ations that Cost & Affect Manufacturability of PCBs," TTM's Julie Ellis finished the morn- ing with an excellent and detailed review of the many design factors that can increase cost and reduce manufacturability. This was a very detailed discussion, and Julie provided an expansive explanation of the cost drivers that affect everything about a printed circuit. This presentation is a must for all to see. On Tuesday, the exhibition opened to a great crowd, despite the threat of rain. Most of the exhibitors were surface mount companies, but in the good old days, the majority were printed circuit fabricators. When I first started working as an engineer, the PCB industry was 90% cap- tive, and assembly was primarily stuffing the component leads in the hole and then wave soldering. But with the advent of SMT, minia- turization really took off. This coincided with the rise of Japan's PCB industry in the early '80s, and soon everyone was scrambling. The number of PCB equipment and pro- cesses vendors has significantly diminished today. U.S. equipment didn't keep up with the times, while German and Japanese equipment makers did, but now even they face formidable challenges from China and other Asian coun- tries. The American process suppliers have always done well, but now with the bulk of PCB fabrication taking place in China, they are merging to gain economy of scale. Long ago Figure 1: PowerPoint slide from Dana Korf's presentation, Printed Circuit Board Factory 4.0.

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